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Five more clusters included under Rurban Mission in Odisha

Bhubaneswar, Aug 16: The State Level Empowerment Committee (SLEC) headed by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi on Tuesday recommended inclusion of five more clusters under Rurban Mission in the State.

With the fresh recommendation the number of clusters taken up under Rurban Mission in Odisha increased to 10.

Panchyati Raj Secretary Deo Ranjan Kumar Singh presented the proposals and outlined the procedures to be adopted in planning and execution of developmental activities in these Rurban villages at the SLEC meeting chaired by the Chief Secretary.

The Chief Secretary directed the concerned authorities to finalise the Integrated Cluster Development Plan (ICAP) for each cluster within this week. Padhi also directed to focus on income generating and sustainable livelihood supporting activities in each cluster. Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan advised for GIS based planning of each cluster.

“The newly recommend areas included under Rurban Mission include Khalikote of Ganjam district, Bhedan of Bargarh district Umorkote of Nabrangpur district, Kothgarh of Kandhamal district and Tusura of Bolangir district. Earlier five areas namely Samasingha of Jharsuguda district, Banapur of Khorda district Talabasta of Cuttack district, Thakurmunda of Mayurbhanj district and Utkela of Kalahandi district were included under the Rurban Mission,” said Panchayati Raj Secretary Seo Ranjan Kumar Singh.

Singh added that the SLEC considered the draft Integrated Cluster Development Plan (ICAP) prepared for earlier included areas. The ICAP envisaged projects of worth around Rs 500 crore for these five areas. While 70 per cent of the estimated expenditure would be arranged from the convergence of ongoing plans and schemes at the State level and around 30 per cent would be provided by the Centre as grant.

Projects like road connectivity, piped water supply, irrigation, solid waste management, digital connectivity, street lights, sanitation projects, income generating livelihood activities, health services,  LPG connections etc have been seen as common felt needs in these areas.  These clusters would be developed as Rurban villages preserving the nature and essence of rural community life with urban living facilities. Each cluster will be developed and managed as one planning area.

Available data shows Thakurmunda will be developed as a cluster with multiple sustainable livelihood opportunities, Utkela will be developed as a commerce cluster, Talabasta as a agro cluster, Banapur as a tourism cluster and Samasingha will be developed as a village handicraft cluster. Chief Secretary directed to create facilities for promotion of livelihood and income generating activities in each of the focus sectors in identified clusters.

Secretaries of various departments were present at the SLEC meeting. 

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